One Year of Lemonade: Beyoncé’s Visual Album is as Impactful as Ever

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Beyoncé’s acclaimed record Lemonade is still making in impact after the first anniversary of its release.

The Peabody Awards, recognized as a prestigious recognition from the Grady College of Journalism and Mass Communication at the University of Georgia, announced its 2016 Entertainment winners Thursday which included the HBO visual album that premiered last year on April 23:

“Lemonade draws from the prolific literary, musical, cinematic, and aesthetic sensibilities of black cultural producers to create a rich tapestry of poetic innovation. The audacity of its reach and fierceness of its vision challenges our cultural imagination while crafting a stunning and sublime masterpiece about the lives of women of color and the bonds of friendship seldom seen or heard in American popular culture.”

This recognition solidifies Lemonade’s impact on American culture that much more. Beyoncé’s sixth studio album is not only a well-crafted depiction of healing from infidelity and betrayal but is also a celebration of black womanhood and solidarity. Lemonade is undoubtedly Beyoncé’s most groundbreaking and culturally impactful project. Aside from its political relevance, which is more evident now than when it was released, Lemonade ignited necessary dialogue about black feminism that has yet to cease.

The visual album has also made an impact on college campuses. James Arnett, an English professor at the University of Tennessee at Chattanooga, held “Lemonade Week” from April 3 to April 6, which included discussions on black feminism and highlighted works by “African- American women writers, poets, philosophers, and theorists.” This resembled the University of Texas at San Antonio, who began offering “Black Women, Beyoncé, and Popular Culture” as a course in September.

Despite the controversy that it has caused in the media, it is unarguable that Lemonade’s contributions to the empowerment of Black women through music and artistry are still being felt. Beyoncé’s message through this album forced the experiences of Black women to the forefront of everyone’s minds and conversations, solidifying Lemonade as integral to current American culture.

Kesi Felton

Communications Intern

Kési Felton is a sophomore Journalism major from Atlanta, Georgia. This year she serves as the Senior Editor for Her Campus Howard Chapter. She also works with the Cathy Hughes School of Communications Student Council as the Assistant Director of the Freshman Mentoring Program. In addition to writing her own personal blog, she has written articles for Walker's Legacy and Pretty Girls Sweat, LLC. Through writing and journalism, Kési hopes to share the stories of underrepresented groups, starting with Black women.

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